Extreme morning sickness during pregnancy could be genetic.
UCLA and USC researchers recently found that women whose family members also had extreme morning sickness were 17 percent more likely to have the condition as well.
Extreme nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, hyperemesis gravidarum or HG, is a condition that hospitalizes 60,000 women each year and can result in termination of the pregnancy.
"Pregnant women with a family history of extreme nausea in pregnancy should be aware that they may have it too," said lead author Marlena Fejzo, assistant professor of hematology–oncology at UCLA of maternal and fetal medicine at USC. "The high familial prevalence strongly suggests a genetic component to this condition."
Researchers urge women whose family has experienced this condition in the past to inform physicians to better prepare for threatening symptoms.
The findings were published online in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.